Sewing Dilemma: Should I copy it?

Before we get into today’s post, a quick reminder that the survey to vote on the upcoming theme months for the Sewcialists is open for another two days!  Visit this post to cast your vote!

On to today’s business, everyone — I need your help!

I have a problem, a challenge, an ethical conundrum! I have a sewing dilemma!  (DRAHMAH!) I would really like your advice on how to proceed because I am flip flopping big time…


My dilemma relates to a pattern release I recently stumbled across.  I love this pattern and, having never come across the company before, was very excited to find a new source of patterns that spark something in me.

I rushed to their site, to purchase same and live my best life in a new, uber-chic dress in our coming Sydney summer.

Maria - sound of music

I would be like this, but with a much nicer dress on….

I got to their site and… they don’t go up to my size.  Catastrophe!  Alarm!  Earth-shaking confidence blow! (Not really, am so beyond that…).

I am used to being on the edge of sizing ranges, but in this case, I am nowhere near their size (they go to a EUR46 only).  I would have to “adjust” by between 5 and 10 inches depending on which measurement.  The word adjust is in quotes there, because at that point it feels like I would be basically drafting a whole new pattern.

The pattern is also around $25 AUD (not including shipping) and is in another language.  It’s a language I speak a bit, but I am nowhere near fluency.

What do I do, people? Do I make my own version of their dress, copying the style without buying the pattern? I searched my soul and was interested in the following internal discussion that resulted:

  • PRO: I should just make my own version — if they don’t go up to my size, I can make that happen (yay me)!
  • CON: I don’t like that they produced this design and I won’t be crediting/paying them for it…
  • PRO: But they didn’t include you! This is what sewing is and why it’s awesome — you can make something even when they didn’t make it go to your size. Also, why do you not mind copying RTW but you do mind copying a pattern?
  • CON: It’s not like they are a big four company though. I wouldn’t copy clothes from a smaller clothing designer as readily as I would a big multi-national clothing company.
  • PRO: Sure, but this dress is simple.  Like super super super simple.  It’s basically a v-neck tank dress with two other details.  At what point is there anything new under the sun anyway?

And so on…



I was like this, but again, wearing nicer clothes…


I went on like this for a while, then decided to ask my friends! What would you do?

I have (poorly) sketched the dress below, so you can see how super simple it is.

Blue Dress - my body model. jpg _LI

It’s a pretty simple dress!

I think the options are:

a) I should go ahead and just make my own version — I am totally overthinking this!

b)  Make my own, but call out the inspiration when I blog/IG post the dress to give credit (and maybe apply a little encouragement to expand the size range).

c)  Buy the pattern and use it as help when making my own — then I have paid them for their time and design.

d)  Something else?

Help me out, people. What do you think I should do?  Let me know in the comments, and thanks for your advice!

Chloe is a Sewcialists Editor, who lives and sews in Australia. She blogs at